Quality according to two definitions in Merriam-Webster’s dictionary can be defined as “degree in excellence” and “superiority in kind”. In this paper I will present some personal views on quality, its impact on our everyday lives and why it is so critical that we understand the meaning of it. I have been working for a manufacturer of video security electronics in Quality Assurance department for 13 years and have worked with a number of quality programs that I will simplify down to define the process involved from my perspective. What makes a quality process happen, why is that important? The reason is because as consumers “quality” is the one thing we see when it is not around. Let’s start by talking about you and a new purchase that you’re planning.
Say for example, you have really wanted this cool new high-tech gizmo that has just been released to the market, something like a new laptop. In eager anticipation of its arrival you have been saving your money all summer to buy it. The day finally arrives; you go to the store, make the purchase, get your new “techno-treasure” home and begin using it. After a week of normal use you notice that it begins to have issues and one evening as you are working on an important class paper, the screen goes black as your brand new laptop dies and all your work with it. What do you do at this point? Who do you call? What can give you back your work and restore your laptop to functioning order. Sadly, at this point nothing can because that should have happened back at the very beginning when the laptop was first designed and assembled. Did that laptop fall into either of our provided dictionary definitions? The answer is definitely no on that one.
Most people believe (if they even know it exists) that quality is just a final inspection and a stamp on certain kinds of products we purchase. W. Edwards Deming was quoted as saying that “You can not inspect quality into the product; it is already there”. That is why...